Monday, July 28, 2008

oh sweet fun!

yes, that is me in this photo on the jetski...mike didn't want to be in in trouble with you again for no photos of Kim on the toy!!! ( with 'lil cousin Riley...)

...yep, this music playing is for MIKE!!!

so, this weekend was a huge, huge hit at the cabin with tons of fun on the lake!
our friends, Dave and Linda and their kids came out for the day sunday and also brought their jetski and tube to play with too....also, we had brought my 14 year old cousin, the lovely Marlee, out with us for the weekend too...AND Marlee's mom and brother came out sunday afternoon as well to join us and all our fun can imagine the FUN and LAUGHS we all had together yesterday!!! it was a perfect day for lake fun and swimming!
and linda, i PROMISE not to tip us next time off the jetski in the middle of the lake!!

( dave and linda on their jetski )
( tyler's best friend, Miss Kelly )

( courtney and rachel, lunchtime! )

( courntey and rachel tubing...I WANT OFF! )

( Dave and Carson, looks like mischief to me....)

( tyler bouncing along with daddy...)

( tyler and kelly sharing a ride )

( daddy and courtney, spotting the tube rides...)

( marlee haning on for dear life, i would too with mike driving!!! hahahaha...)

( ahhhhhh, that was a fun day!! )

...yep, what a great weekend! I'm sunburned, bruised and aching all over today, but it was so worth it! I can't remember having so many good laughs and being IN the water swimming and having so much fun at the lake since i was a teenager! we had excellent company of family and friends and i'm so glad we had such a memorable day together!
.....i need to get some photos from my moms camera to share something else with you, but on thursday night ( july 24 ) our family had a special "evening in scotland" with some of our family and friends to have a get-together before we leave for our trip and to say 'thank you ' to all those who have participated in our fundraisers through the dance school for this trip. we wanted to share courtney's dancing with everyone as most of you have heard about and seen photos of her dancing events, but not seen her dance in person. or if you have, it's been at concerts where it's been all group choreography and does not even come close to all her hard work, lessons and practicing through the year required for her individual competitions, which is mostly what the final outcome of highland dance is. so, we had a special evening to share this with everyone and let courtney perform 9 of her competition dances she will be performing while away in Scotland.
i took some photos but NONE of her dancing!!! i was "M.C.-ing" the evening, and was giving history of the dances in between so courtney could catch her breath!! but , i know mom and a few others were taking photos of her dancing, so i am hoping to get some copies ( PRETTY PLEASE! ) from those of you who were taking pic's!!!! ( and i will pay you back for them if you get me copies!!! )
anyway, that was our thrusday and i will share photos with you soon from that!!
well, we are now down to 17 more days until we leave and i had better get my head into that mode or else we will be leaving with empty suitcases!!! hahaha!! so many things to make lists for ( which i am usually good at, but am so lost right now....) so i have to get my thinking cap on!
I have ordered all my supplies i need for the hall crops starting in september and it's all least i have that accomplished!! LOL!
well, off i go to get things done....lots of laundry to do, i guess i'll start there!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

the lake

...ok, so the new jetski FLIES like a bullet out of a gun!
we had sooo much fun with it this past weekend at the lake! i have never been out ON the lake like that in all my years growing up at the cabin! when my mom was younger they had a fishing boat at the cabin to use for water skiing and stuff, but my brothers and i never had even a canoe to play on the lake with! so for my first time in almost 37 years, i finally got to ride on the lake!
it was so thrilling to crank the machine into high gear and ride into the wind...yelling all my YaHoo's and WooHoo's at the top of my lungs!!!
of course, mike got dibs on first ride to make sure all was in check and in running order, and that 'high speed' was in check too!!! LOL!

...after my turn on the new toy, the kids got their turn to ride with daddy! courtney got to go first and i could hear her squealing from the shore!

( click on this photo to see courtney's big grin )

these were tyler's words after his first ride!!!
( click to see HIS big smile too! )

...on saturday we tried out tubing with the jetski...
another score with the kids!

..tyler's first ride...

...and courtney's first ride...

( you have to click to make this next one bigger and see courtney's hilarious expression! )

...yep, so glad mike bought us a new toy! we all will have lots of happy memories during the summer at the lake with it for sure!
sorry you didn't get to see any photos of ME on the can question mike on why he didn't think to take a couple...i even had the camera right there on the beach for him...i told him he's is big DOG DOO with you now for not taking any pic's of me playing!!
ALSO....we are babysitting ( i say 'baby' and not 'dog' because she loves to be treated like a baby...belly rubs, cuddles, playtime.....
anyway, we are babysitting Maggie for our friends again for almost a couple weeks!
we all love her company and she is such a good pup!!!
...and lookie what my MIL bought for me to take to Scotland!!
a new hand bag / cosmetic bag set...all in the right "color for Kim"!!!
thanks again Liz...i love it!!!
our trip is now 22 days away and it's really time to start planning for packing and changing money, buying travellers cheques, buying gifts for friends and family out there, getting pictures printed for them too...all these little jobs that cause so many errands and running around....
courtney will be competing in 5 competitions throughout Scotland so we've been doing lots of extra practising and soon be starting extra workshop lessons with her dance teacher starting in a week....
now you know why i've been escaping to the cabin as much as possible NOW!!!
well, i better be some baking to do for our little family get-together thursday night, a 'scottish shin-dig' before we leave!! courtney will be dancing for them all as well!! lookin' forward to a fun family night!!!

Friday, July 18, 2008

home and gone...again!

happy 4th anniversary to my sweetie!!!
yesterday was our anniversary and the kids and i came home ( after SIX glorious days at the cabin ) in the afternoon to shower up, do some laundry, visit at grandmas and pack up again to go back to the cabin for the weekend!!
mike and i got to enjoy ourselves with a nice, quiet dinner alone ( THAT doesn't happen very often! hahahaha! ) to celebrate our special day and then we picked up the kids from mom's and came home.
( i love you honey! )
while we were driving to go out for dinner i managed to snap this sunset last night ( anniversary sunset too! ) while going over the Nairn Ave overpass...almost missed it as it set so fast!
last saturday, we had a fun visit from our friend dave who brought out the kids for a swim too ( Rachel, Carson and Kelly Belly )
the kids had fun going for dips in the lake and 'fishing' for minnows!
( courtney and rachel are experts with lots of practise from last year!! )

...the lovely little miss kelly...
( hi squirt! )

now the four of us are going back to the lake in a few hours to launch and play with our new toy!!
yep, mike bought us a Sea Doo jetski...this just made our summers at the cabin much more interesting! he bought it this week while i was at the cabin with the kids...we have been talking about getting one for a couple years now, BUT since dave went and bought one ( you evil tempter you...) mike finally couldn't resist anymore and, well, the rest as they say is history!!
so, i'm hoping to have some fun photos for you when we come home sunday night!!
( dave says that mike made him buy a Ski doo when mike got his last winter so this was payback with the purchase of the jetski! )
you boys and your toys....
i hope you all have been having a fun summer so far...i can't believe that it's already the middle of july!! time is just going so fast. too fast.
our trip to scotland is only 26 days away and all the extra dance lessons and things that HAVE to get done before we leave will come so quickly...i wanted to take the kids out to the lake as much as possible and enjoy before we go.
what have you been up to so far??
i hope enjoying you time with your children while school is out and making lots of memories!
( and scrapbooking!! )
...see ya in a couple days...

Saturday, July 12, 2008

be back soon!

well, i am off to our little family cabin with courtney and tyler until thursday and we are so excited to go!
the kids have been bugging 'when are we going to the lake' almost everyday since the last day of school, and with our overseas trip next month, we won't have a lot of time to go out there until the fall...soooooo....we are making sure to get out as much as possible before Scotland is on our doorstep!
i am planning to take some scrapbooking goodies out to play with in the evenings while the kids are playing and making their own craft projects i am bringing for them to do....wish me luck on getting something done!
the weather forecast is HOT for the whole week so we should get lots of swimming in and i can hardly wait!!

( trust me, the cabin looks a lot smaller from the outside! )
grandma and grandpa have a moving date of sept.13 for their new apartment!
we are so excited for them, although grandma is still hesitant and anxious about the move, they are so ready for their own home again! this will be like starting over in a new home for them, with lots of new friends to make in their building ( which is almost completely finished constuction now ) and already know a few people going in there too!
it will be so good for them to get back into the swing of things with their friends and all kinds of senior activities that are planned in the building for them all.
who knows? maybe one day courntey can come and dance for them all?
and maybe some of her dance pals may be interested in coming too and put on a little show???
anyway, i just thought i'd give you a little update on their exciting news!
i will be back thursday but if you feel like giving mike a call or email so he's not completely bored with NO WIFE and NO KIDS for 5 days, then you just go ahead!!

Thursday, July 10, 2008


a peaceful, no appointments, no 'gotta do' list
kinda day!!!

i'm luvin' it.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Sharing Victoria ( warning: lots of photos! )

...dang...what pictures do i choose to share out of 249???
those of you who know our family of course will eventually see them all but for now, i tried to sum up our trip for EVERYONE for now as best i can... your tea ready? pull up a seat and enjoy with us...

...ready for takeoff to start our trip...

...our first day there, courtney had a provincial rep rehersal to go to in the afternoon for the opening ceremonies that evening. on our walk to the Royal Theatre we crossed the ABOVE street and courtney thought it was pretty cool! ( note: we did LOTS of walking and crossed this street MANY times! )

...courtney and dance friend from winnipeg, kelsey, at the opening ceremonies - DAY 1
( this was a VERY proud moment of the event to hear our girls being piped out onto the stage by the Victoria City Police Pipe Band and see them carrying the manitoba banner! each dancer was called forward and introduced by full name and took a bow! it was thrilling!!

...after the ceremonies, courtney and i took a walk along the inner harbour for our first time to explore and of opp's!!

{ giggle } front of the famous EMPRESS hotel, we found several carriage rides available. we did not go on one ( much to courtney's disappointment - 30 mins= $90 ) but the driver of this carriage started talking to courtney and told her that she used to highland dance too! kinda cool!

...thursday morning - DAY 2 - we went to the Victoria Bug Zoo!
we being courtney and i plus our roomates for our first 3 nights - sheila, daniel and kailey!
kailey takes dance lessons with courtney together at their saturday workshops!
this was a pretty icky place for myself, but the kids thought it was cool. they were allowed to hold some of the bugs too...ICK!

...yes, that is a MILLIPEDE on daniel's face...

...after the girls' first competition, we went out for Mexican dinner that night!
it was so good...i really wish we had a mexican restaurant in winnipeg...i miss Chi Chi's!


...after dinner we all went down to the inner harbour again for a stroll and to walk off dinner!
this guy dressed as Darth Vader playing the violin in the park was too cool to not take a picture of! like downtown winnipeg, and the forks, there were people everywhere around the harbour 'doing their thing' to make some cashola! will see lots of legislative building picures to follow but i was captured by the appearance of it, especially right off the harbour, and couldn't stop taking pictures of it!!! hahaha!

...and hey, if anybody knows what they call the golden statue on the top of their building, please let me know!! ( like how winnipeg's statue is called 'the golded boy'...)

...on to DAY 3...
courtney and kelsey competed in their first Interprovincial Championships competition in the morning together! they both danced well and tried their best. unfortunately courtney did not place again this day but kelsey managed to win a couple medals!
(good work girls...we know how hard these competitions were and you worked so hard!!! )

...after a stressful morning, courtney and i headed out on the harbour ferry for a tour! we went all around the marina and got off at the famous Fisherman's Wharf for lunch and to see the sea lions. it was very relaxing and we have many great memories of this afternoon!

...Fisherman's Wharf is where you will find lots of 'floating houses' as residence's and a bunch of little lunch shacks and of course......

the sea lions!!!
we bought some herring and fed them too ( well, i did anyway...)
so, so cute!!!!

...and then of course back to the downtown inner harbour to go back to the hotel...
hey, may as well grab another shot of the legislative building....
( such a camera geek )
friday night ( still DAY 3 ) we had the Provincial Rep banquet dinner to attend.
so, here we are dressed for the 'ball' ....HA. worst dinner of the week!!( not kidding - thank goodness for granola bars and yogurt back at the hotel.... )
...hahaha...i feel i have a right ( along with the other 500+ people there to complain about wasting our $43 for this banquet...)
okay, i'm done now!

...saturday DAY 4...
after dancing so well this morning, and then coming out with no medals again, courtney's disappointment and discouragement was heartbreaking! we both knew and saw how tough her competition was but we still had hopes for her last day to place!
I took her for our longest day of walking yet and walked up to Beacon Hill Park where we found so many beautiful gardens and fountains, tons of ducks and so much beauty to make my camera go into overtime!
here's some of my fav's... the park was Beacon Hill Petting Farm...
we saw a bunch of cute little animals and LOTS of new baby goats! courtney liked it in there!

...these little guys are only 5 days old!! so cute!

...a massive redwood tree outside of the petting farm...

...and then on we walked for more adventure...
we went to the famous Beacon Hill Drive In ( kinda like winnipeg's BDI ) and had some yummy dinner there and got ourselves a ribbon ice cream - bubble gum - each and continued on our walk.
we went to see the Terry Fox memorial and also the Mile 0 of the Trans Canada Highway!
pretty cool stuff!

..accross the 'street' from Mile 0 you can go down what seemed like a hundred stairs and go down to the ocean! so of course we went!

...this was a first time for both of us to see the Pacific Ocean so hand and foot dipping were definitely a requirement!

courtney made some friends while competing and exchanged emails with several of the girls from accross canada. but this little girl, rachel, became a good dance buddy to courtney and she is from scotland! her mom and i exchanged our contact and mailing information for the girls and as it turns out, they live pretty close to where we will be staying while we are in Glasgow in August!! the family has invited the five of us to come for a visit and dinner some time when we may have a few free hours away from the rest of our group!! i told lynn ( courtney's dance teacher ) about our invitation and she told me to make sure we do go for a visit!
the girls will also be competing again together at a couple competitions while we are in scotland!
very exciting to have made some new friends overseas!!!
( courtney is only about 5 months older than rachel...dang, my girl is getting so tall! )

this photo was taken on DAY 5, the last day of competition!
yes, the day courtney won her 2 medals to take home!
( see following post! )
after her last competition, courtney and i took the transit bus up to go visit
Craigdarroch Castle!
it was SO COOL!
man, what money can buy you....
i'm so glad we went to see it! we are in the Tower of the castle...what a stunning view!

...below is the Tower from outside...

...this also being our last night in Victoria, BC, the dancers had a little 'pool party' in the hotel accross from us and invited courtney to come join in the fun!
we stayed for a coupel hours and then went on our last evening walk of our trip!
( L to R: rachel, courtney, madison, christina, jean, chloe and jillian from edmonton )
sorry leanne and tera, i missed you in the photo!

...yep, here we go agin with the leg. building...BUT this time it's all lit up at night!!

...monday morning, DAY 6, and our last day there, i took courntey on the Orca Spirit, a whale watching boat adventure!!

unfortunately, we did not get to see any whales on our 3 hour boat excursion, but we did see lots of seals, bald eagles, geographic landmarks and on our way back, we did see Dall's porpoises jumping and swimming along the bough of the boat with us!! ( they used to be called Baby Orca's because they look like them, only smaller )
so, it wasn't completely uneventful...we are on a 'no whale sighting' tour so we are able to go for another adventure if we ever go back to victoria, at no charge!
it was hard to leave this beautiful city. not one stinkin' mosquito in site. it was perfect.
courtney had the dance experience of her life ( well, until next month.....) and it was a learning experience and a wonderful adventure, one i will always cherish with her!
of course, my camera didn't stop working even while on the airplane...
i couldn't resist the fluffy clouds...they look so welcoming and peaceful....

...and halfway to winnipeg, after keeping a close eye out my window, i got this beautiful sunset photo up in the clouds in our airplane!!

...i tip my hat to you for reading and staying to the end of our adventure!!!
hope you enjoyed a glimpse of our experience in
Victoria, BC
...i will remember...